“This is what Amboseli has to offer and when it does, I think it is unrivalled as a spectacle in the natural world. A battalion of
elephants in one seamless, cohesive unit charging through the desert. To see this scene played out is a real privilege and one that should always get the adrenaline flowing.
I find myself reaching for military metaphors, but this spectacle is accompanied by an eerie silence and the serenity of the desert is not compromised. I sense that The Desert Rats, the byname for the 7th Armoured Division, would have made more noise in their celebrated campaign against Rommel in North Africa in 1941.
The photographer’s job, when encountering such a desert army of elephants, demands quick thinking on positioning and a really strong relationship and understanding with his driver. We have been in this situation a few times and one potential variable is now a constant – we use a 200mm lens. Anything shorter is too loose and going for more compression risks cutting off some of the army. This is not an easy image to capture and I did have a cigar that night. Maybe like General Harding or indeed General Rommel.”